Tuesday was another thrilling day in the NBA playoffs. Dogs and favorites split 1-1 ATS. The Celtics (+ 2 on the spread, + 110 on the moneyline) upset the Raptors 102-99 to take a commanding 2-0 series lead. Boston had value as a contrarian line freeze play for most of the day, as a slight majority of bets took Toronto to bounce back but the line stayed at Raptors -1.5. Right before tip-off, some respected money hit the Raptors to push the line up to -2. But in the end it didn't matter as the Celtics eked out the victory. After opening as a + 125 dog to win the series at BetMGM, Boston is now a -455 favorite. The Raptors have moved from -150 to + 335.
In the late game, the Nuggets (-1.5) won an instant classic 80-78 over the Jazz. Denver held a big lead for much of the game but then Utah battled back to tie it late. Utah had a chance to win it at the buzzer but Mike Conley's three rimmed out. Denver came up huge for the public (and crushed the sportsbooks) as roughly three-out-of-four bets backed the Nuggets. Late respected money hit Denver, pushing the Nugs up from -1 to -1.5 right before tip-off.
Totals went a perfect 2-0 yesterday. Playoff totals are 4-0 over the past two days and 8-2 since play resumed on Saturday. Unders are now 24-20 (54.5%) this playoffs. One under trend in particular that bettors should pay attention to is Game 7 unders. Historically, when you get to Game 7 players are tired from a grueling, long series. This leads to their shots being off. Also, the importance and pressure of the game leads to more emphasis on defense and using the entire shot clock to get off a good look. With last night's Jazz-Nuggets under win, Game 7 unders are now 29-19 (60.4%) since 2005, according to Bet Labs Sports. We have another Game 7 under match tonight.
For an updated breakdown of Tuesday's betting action, be sure to tune in to the VSiN Market Insights Podcast with Josh Appelbaum.
Also be sure to check out our live VSiN programming during the afternoon. I'll be co-hosting the Lombardi Line from 12 p.m. ET to 1 p.m. ET and then co-hosting Betting Across America from 3 p.m. ET to 5 p.m. ET. Join us as we break down the day's sharp action across the MLB, NBA and NHL.
In the meantime, let's discuss a pair of matchups receiving notable smart money today.
6:30 p.m. ET: Miami Heat vs Milwaukee Bucks
The Heat shocked the Bucks in Game 1, winning 115-104 as five-point dogs to take a 1-0 series lead. This Game 2 line opened with Milwaukee listed as a 4.5-point favorite. The public is torn and doesn't know which way to go. They love the idea of backing the Heat off a win getting a handful of points but also respect Giannis and company in a bounce-back spot. But sharps made up their minds. They immediately rushed to the window to lay the points with the Bucks -4.5, pushing the line up to Milwaukee -5. One big injury to monitor here is Bucks point guard Eric Bledsoe. He missed the series opener and is considered a game-time decision tonight. This series price opened at Bucks -500, Heat + 375. It has now been adjusted to Bucks -200, Heat + 165.
9 p.m. ET: Oklahoma City Thunder vs Houston Rockets
Bettors are graced with their second Game 7 in as many days. The Thunder showed a ton of resolve and resilience by battling back to win 104-100 as 5.5-point dogs in Game 6. Now it's do-or-die for both teams with the winner moving on to play the Lakers. This line opened with Houston listed as a 5-point favorite. Respected money has come down on the Rockets, pushing the line up to Houston -5.5. Pros have really crushed the under. The total opened at 221 and has been bet down to 219. This would match the historical Game 7 under trend, which cashed last night in the Jazz-Nuggets game.